Cyclocross

Every year our entire company gets together and one of the things we all have to do is give a four minute talk on any subject. In the past, this has always made me super nervous, and this was the first year that I wasn’t shaking in my boots. Progress!

The slides aren’t exactly synced up, but if you have ever wanted to learn more about cyclocross or have no idea what it is, your wait is over!

Two things I want to work on for next time:

  1. Look at the audience instead of the slides
  2. Less “um”s and “yeah”s

Looking forward

One year turning into the next is exciting. I feel filled with hope and reenergized. It’s not about resolutions; I don’t really make goals. If I want to do something, I’ll just do it. It’s more about the feeling of knowing there’ll be new places to explore, relationships to grow, things to make, ideas to form, and lessons to learn.

Cheers 🎊

Sketch notes from WordCamp Denver

I went to my first WordCamp this weekend in Denver. What’s a WordCamp?

WordCamps are informal, community-organized events that are put together by WordPress users. Everyone from casual users to core developers participate, share ideas, and get to know each other.

It was a great to see coworkers from far away places and talk to real live users and developers of WordPress and especially WooCommerce. I also sat in on quite a few talks and sketched some notes on my iPad.

CritiquePress
Sonja Leix and Meg Delagrange critiqued websites that were submitted by a few brave conference-goers.

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eCommerce Townhall
Caleb Burks of WooCommerce and Pippin Williamson of Easy Digital Downloads answered any and all questions the audience had about eCommerce and selling things online.

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Accessibility Testing
Robert Jolly gave a great talk about accessibility and testing for WordPress development.

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Marketing and Growth Townhall
Tracy Malone and Amber Hinds answered everyone’s marketing questions.

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Forms that Don’t Suck
Steve Wells and Jessica Wittmier told us how to engage users with forms that aren’t terrible.

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Business Townhall
And Vi Wickam, Miles Kailburn, D’nelle Dowis, and Gordon Seirup ended the first day with a great Q&A about all things business.

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design.blog

At Automattic, we have an online design magazine at design.blog. It’s something that our Head of Design, John Maeda created and it has become a joint effort across all the designers and design lovers I work with.

Every Thursday we publish a new issue, which involves 2-3 articles from design leaders and a brand new homepage created by an Automattic designer. This week, it was my turn! I used the Paper app on the iPad Pro with the Apple Pencil to illustrate the cover. It was really fun and actually made me want to get back to my ink and watercolors doodles.

Design.blog cover:

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Individual images:

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Press:

Turn your brain off

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I turn my brain off.

I was recently explaining my strategy when mountain biking  up a seemingly endless hill. I ignore the voice in my head that says to stop the second it becomes too hard. I only stop after its nagged me a few times. This helps me get better at climbing and eventually I’ll only have to stop three times on the way to the top. And then two. And then one day I’ll make it up without stopping at all. 🙌

I do a version of this while descending. I try to only brake a little bit after my scared brain wants* to. Then I try to add a bit more time to that. And then a tiny bit more. This is my way of getting a faster and also helps me become more confident to shred the downhill sections, through rock gardens, around berms, over drops, or whatever comes my way.

Easy to say, hard to do.

*Notice it says ‘wants’ and not ‘needs’. I’m not trying to hurt myself. I’ve done that already

Apex Park

More mountain biking with coworkers! This time we parked our cars strategically so we got to bomb downhill. Michael ate some dirt, but otherwise it was a great time.

Cuteness, in all its versatility

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Loved the gorgeous trail views of North Table Mesa and Denver in the distance from this ride, so good! There were good falls had, and I learned to bunnyhop while a bunny hopped by… omgwhatsocute.

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Hail on a Mountaintop in Evergreen

My coworkers Sheri and Chris were in town for a meetup and stayed a few extra days. She took some great pictures when we all went mountain biking in Evergreen at Three Sisters with Michael and Emi.

Cuteness, in all its versatility

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This ride involved an almost immediate fall on my part 🙂 and hail at the top of the mountain which I didn’t mind at all. Oh, and Cactus Jack’s pretzel bites are a must.

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